Definition of superlative in English:

superlative

Line breaks: su|per¦la|tive
Pronunciation: /suːˈpəːlətɪv
 
, sjuː-/

adjective

  • 2 Grammar (Of an adjective or adverb) expressing the highest or a very high degree of a quality (e.g. bravest, most fiercely). Contrasted with positive and comparative.
    More example sentences
    • The result was a phenomenal success and classical music critics around the world competed with each other to invent ever-new terms of superlative praise.

noun

Back to top  
  • 1 Grammar A superlative adjective or adverb.
    More example sentences
    • Joseph's resume is also peppered with superlatives.
    • This use of superlatives is poor journalism, period.
  • 1.1 (the superlative) The highest degree of comparison.
    More example sentences
    • It does so most often in the form of the comparative and the superlative of bad: worse and worst.
  • 2 (usually superlatives) An exaggerated or hyperbolical expression of praise: the critics ran out of superlatives to describe him
    More example sentences
    • And the only one who saw through the hyperbole and the meaningless superlatives was my Aunt Petunia, and she was half-deaf.
    • After writing nearly 100 DVD reviews, one begins to run out of superlatives to describe the better discs which pass before the eyes and ears.
    • I can heap superlatives attempting to describe the merits of this film.

Derivatives

superlatively

adverb
[as submodifier]: he was superlatively fit
More example sentences
  • In the dry season (December to June) Castara Bay is superlatively clear, with a healthy coral reef beginning about 50 yards offshore.
  • The action is covered in a series of long takes with superlatively choreographed movement within the frame.
  • He had been recognized years ago as a superlatively gifted and disciplined craftsman.

superlativeness

noun
More example sentences
  • It is a movement of life which shows life in its superlativeness and at its best.
  • It is applied as an epithet denoting superlativeness of any quality.
  • I agree with you on the superlativeness of a really good dark chocolate truffle.

Origin

late Middle English: from Old French superlatif, -ive, from late Latin superlativus, from Latin superlatus 'carried beyond', past participle of superferre.

More definitions of superlative

Definition of superlative in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day skosh
Pronunciation: skəʊʃ
noun
a small amount; a little